Governor to DC: Guam’s Healthcare, Infrastructure, and Skilled Labor Are Key to National Security

Governor to DC: Guam’s Healthcare, Infrastructure, and Skilled Labor Are Key to National Security


Washington, D.C. - Governor Lou Leon Guerrero is meeting with top US officials in Washington, D.C., this week to emphasize that national security and defense, aligned with the military's Indo-Pacific Strategy and Pacific Deterrence Initiatives, relies on more than military might. On this federal mission, she has met with Dr. Kurt Campbell, currently serving as the National Security Council Coordinator for the Indo-Pacific and chief architect of the Biden Administration’s Asia Strategy; various officials from the White House, including Gretchen Sierra-Zorita, the Director for Puerto Rico and the Territories at the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, along with Erika Moritsugu and Ting Wu; Guam Congressman James Moylan, Congressman Rob Wittman, Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro, DOI Acting Deputy Secretary Laura Daniel-Davis, Secretary of the Army Christine Wormuth, and Department of Veterans Affairs Under Secretary for Health Dr. Shereef Elnahal. 


“We must work to ensure that we have an integrated One Guam approach to the Guam Buildup that provides comprehensive healthcare for both civilians and military personnel, including streamlined services for veterans in terms of healthcare and claims benefits processing, a skilled workforce supplemented by the H-2B visa waiver program, and robust infrastructure. This infrastructure planning must consider how defense access roads are to be constructed in conjunction with planned civilian projects, such as the future site of the public hospital. Military spending should also address civilian needs like the medical complex, port readiness, and cybersecurity protections, which are just a few of the critical initiatives directly tied to national security and the defense of our nation,” stated Governor Leon Guerrero. 


Lt. Governor Joshua Tenorio, currently serving as Acting Governor of Guam, added,  "This has been the foundation of our Team Guam approach since the beginning of the Leon Guerrero-Tenorio Administration. I can attest that each time the Governor and I see any opportunity, even the slightest, to push for a win-win situation or to advance a resolution addressing historical injustices, such as war reparations for the island's manåmko’, full reimbursement of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), and permanently securing the enhanced Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP), we have done so and realized positive results. I am fully committed to continuing this kind of effective leadership beyond 2026, ensuring that the people of Guam remain the beneficiaries of all our negotiations with the federal government.”


“Although there is more dialogue and a willingness to extend the military buildup funding outside the fence, it will take continued innovation, forward-thinking, and persistence to make the case that more defense spending on Guam, outside the military fence, is necessary to fund the plans that our administration has been presenting and to meet the military's objectives in Guam and the Indo-Pacific region,” said Governor Leon Guerrero. 


She also emphasized the importance of port readiness, which is crucial for military operations, advocating for military support to replace the Port of Guam's three aging STS gantry cranes. She highlighted the need for necessary investments by the military to ensure the Port of Guam does not become a choke point in the buildup.

Governor Leon Guerrero’s delegation includes Port Authority of Guam General Manager Rory Respicio and Guam Economic Development Authority (GEDA) CEO & Administrator Melanie Mendiola. 


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